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Thursday, September 15, 2011

Slamming Into The Internet Wall, Again

What did I do NOW?
When you live life on HIGH all the time, you tend to get in a lot of trouble. All of the problems I have revolve around doing too much, too fast. And over the last five or six years, I've learned that the Internet has more boundaries and rules than you can imagine. Today, I found myself slamming into the Internet wall, again.

My first problem on the Internet started when I initially jumped on the information highway back in 1995 with a used IBM laptop running AOL DOS v1.2. Email and chat were my only WMD's at the time. I had a handful of friends to whom I'd write emails. Well, I had to tell the WHOLE freakin' story in every email. Routinely, I'd fire off a 6,000 word email. I'd get a reply, "STOP IT!" - Hittin' the wall.

Then, I got on MySpace. I loaded up my site with so much flashing, blinking, carnival crap, it wouldn't load. WHAM, "Was that a wall I just hit?" I finally got on and got sick of the whole mess and closed the account.

Life was peaceful, then I heard about this thing called Facebook. I got on it, but never used it for two years.

One day, I was feeling lonely, so I logged in to Facebook, and I haven't logged off in three years or so.

In the beginning, I was OK, then I started playing Mafia Wars and I wanted to get a lot of people in my crew. That's when things went downhill, fast. I started clicking on those, "YOU MAY KNOW" pictures on the right side of FB. I didn't "know" any of them. Facebook gets mad if you click on too many of them, too quickly in one day. FB also gets mad if you try to add too many people at any time, even if you know them all. As a warning, you used to get Pink Slips from FB. I had piles of Pink Slips. If you get enough in a row, they shut down your account.

Eventually, my pink past caught up with me, and I got the "THIS ACCOUNT HAS BEEN SUSPENDED TEMPORARILY, Please contact..." message. Are those brick marks on my face?

That happened several times. I finally opened another FB account, then I forgot the login. I can't even shut it down. WHAM, ouch!

Twitter was like crack for me. I opened one account and started tweeting, once I figured out what the hell it was. When I first opened my account, for two weeks I tweeted, "Hello" once a day and never heard back.

But, once I figure out the ways of the tweeter, I took off like a tweaker. Every week I opened a new account. Don't ask why. But I was tweeting round the clock. When I discovered TweetDeck, this was like going from smoking the little bird to mainlining. I could tweet 16 accounts with one click. Talk about an adrenaline rush. ATTACK! And I still wondered why some of those accounts were shut down. While I was laying on the ground, Humpty Dumpty fell on my head. Ouch!

Don't even ask what happened on YouTube and the second MySpace account. We can file those under things that go BUMP in the night... right into walls. 

And the countless times I worked on something for three or four hours and the autosave wasn't working and the program locked up and.... blip... good-bye... "Is this a fucking dream? Make it stop."

I tried to cut back. But, man, it was hard. I shut down all of my Twitter accounts, but one. And then I checked a box that said, "Update Facebook with your tweets."At the time, I wasn't tweeting much. I was still going to TA meetings.

On a sunny, clear day in Las Vegas, after drinking 12 shots of iced espresso, I decided to see how many jokes I could write on Twitter, staying within the 140 character limit. On Twitter, that kind of tweeting gets lost in the shuffle. On Facebook, you really piss people off. My inbox filled up from friends. The only way I could have seen the word SPAM more was if I worked at the meat processor's plant in the canning department.

I gave up the Internet for about seven months. When I came back, I had a much more reserved approach. One Twitter account. One Facebook account, plus the one I couldn't get into. I thought I was safe.

Then, I learned how to use hashtags (#) on Twitter. A new term came into my lexicon of Internet infractions - Hashtag Abuse. Right now, I'm serving my third suspension. I'm in therapy, too. "Why do I keep finding walls in front of me?" My therapist said, "What is Twitter?" Huh? "Forget it, I'll just go home and double up on those pills that are supposed to relax me.

Have you ever clicked on something and said, "OH NO!" and realized there was no UNDO for what you just did? I terminated myself as the admin on my own blog and locked myself out. I needed a paperclip and some duct tape to figure that out. 

Today, I never heard the tires screeching as I logged on to the seven sites I have open all the time. I opened TweetDeck and started to do my usual, programming tweets for when I'm not at the computer. I programmed one tweet and on the second one I got a message in a box at the top of the screen "SCHEDULING ERROR: YOU HAVE SCHEDULED TOO MANY UPDATES." I think I have to get my windshield replaced.

Walls don't stop me. I went to my HootSuite account that I never use and started filling that baby up. It's only a matter of time before I get hooted off of that, too.

I've tried relaxation technique, listening to soft music on iTunes, overdosing on sedatives, eating sleeping pills, giving up coffee, eliminating sugar, taking blood pressure medication, eating whole blocks of Velveeta, just to constipate myself and get sluggish - nothing works. I am what I am. I live life on high. And I've resigned myself to the fact that life will include slamming into the Internet wall, again, and again, and again. Who knows, I might even crash into Al Gore.

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